A day in a West Bank refugee camp

20 April 2011

April 2011
Aida refugee camp, West Bank

Aida refugee camp sits near the West Bank towns of Bethlehem and Beit Jala, and hosts over 4,700 people. Aida today is severely overcrowded, and the sewage and water systems are unable to support all the residents.

The Israeli-built West Bank Barrier runs alongside the camp, with watchtowers overlooking the boys’ school.

The presence of the Barrier has had a devastating economic, social and psychological effect on communities in the West Bank, and is one of the main ways in which Palestinians, including refugees, suffer ongoing displacement. Many West Bank Palestinians have lost access to their land and agricultural resources because of the Barrier.

To date, just over 60 per cent of the planned 709km Barrier has been constructed by Israel.

In a 2005 advisory opinion, the International Court of Justice concluded that the route of the Barrier was illegal under international law.

Two UNRWA students from Gaza enjoy recess in their first day of school. © 2017 UNRWA Photo by Rushdi Al-Saraj
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